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Press Release 02-14-2011

EEOC to Examine Treatment of Unemployed Job Seekers

Commission to Meet Feb. 16 at Agency Headquarters

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will hold a public meeting on Wednesday, February 16, at 9:30 a.m. (Eastern Time), at agency headquarters, 131 M Street, N.E. In accordance with the Sunshine Act, the meeting is open for public observation of the Commission's deliberations.

In order to examine the practice by employers of excluding currently unemployed persons from applicant pools, including in job announcements, the Commission will hear from invited panelists on the potential impact on job seekers. The meeting agenda includes:

Panel 1: U.S. Department of Labor's Latest Unemployment Data

  • William E. Spriggs, Assistant Secretary for Policy, U.S. Department of Labor

Panel 2: Unemployment Status Screening

  • Christine Owens, Executive Director, National Employment Law Project (NELP)
  • Fernan R. Cepero, Vice President for Human Resources, The YMCA of Greater Rochester, representing SHRM
  • Amy Dias, Partner, Jones Day
  • Helen Norton, Professor, University of Colorado Law School

Panel 3: Impact on Unemployed Persons

  • Fatima Goss Graves, Vice President for Education and Employment, National Women's Law Center
  • Algernon Austin, Director of the Race, Ethnicity, and the Economy Program, Economic Policy Institute
  • Joyce Bender, CEO, Bender Consulting Services

A brief question-and-answer session with EEOC Commissioners will follow each panel discussion.

Seating is limited and it is suggested that visitors arrive 30 minutes before the meeting in order to be processed through security and escorted to the meeting room.

The Commission agenda is subject to revision. Additional information about the hearing, when available, will be posted at

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at